THIS YEAR, THE SWANS COMMUNITY TRUST SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHED A NEW OFFERING THAT HAS SEEN THE CLUB’S OFFICIAL CHARITY TAKE A STEP INTO HIGHER EDUCATION.
By partnering with the University of South Wales and the EFL Trust, the Community Trust has been able to offer students the chance to earn a foundation degree in community football coaching and development.
With its first semester coming to a close, the programme has been a success for all involved.
Providing students with an opportunity to gain industry-recognised coaching awards, the course allows people to study all sub-disciplines of coaching and football development, whilst gaining valuable qualifications.
“The aim of the course is for students to come to us in the Community Trust and gain experience in real-world situations, alongside learning at the Liberty in weekly lectures,” said Thomas Williams, the Trust’s education manager.
“They do two lectures a week in the stadium, as well as eight hours a week volunteering with us in the community, working alongside our staff and delivering sessions on our various programmes.”
Coaching both in the classroom and on the sports field, the students have been able to put what they learn into practice with our Premier League Primary Stars project, as well aiding the Trust with a variety of other initiatives such as our weekly Down’s Syndrome football sessions.
This mix of in-class learning and work on real-life football projects in the community has proved popular with students, who are able to develop an array of skills that will enable them to progress to a variety of careers, including football in the community coaches and social inclusion officers.
“I love everything about the course,” said one student, Elliot Cooper, who used to be an insurance broker but decided a change of career was needed.
“Football has always been my passion and the course has been absolutely fantastic.
“I’m getting industry experience with a Premier League team and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. It’s a great opportunity and it will put me in great stead for the future.”
Fellow student Harry Philip Thomas added: “It’s helping me to become more employable and gain more industry experience.
“Being here at the stadium is brilliant and we’re really involved in the work that the Community Trust does.
“It’s not just sat in a classroom, we’re out and about in the community and getting great coaching experience.”
Another student, Richard Harris, said: “I cannot recommend it more highly. It really is a great opportunity and I’d recommend it to anyone.”
For more information, please contact our education manager Joanna Fisher.